Last month a Los Angeles highway closed for seven hours after a tractor-trailer truck heading northbound crossed the center median and struck a tanker traveling in the opposite direction. The crash caused a deadly chain reaction that involved in at least six other vehicles. Unfortunately, this is only the latest of many truck accidents in the greater Los Angeles area. Truck accidents are extremely dangerous and can be catastrophic for those involved. As the number of Los Angeles area truck accidents rise, so will the number of personal injury lawsuits filed by victims.
Truck Accidents on the Rise in Los Angeles Area
As the California economy continues to improve, the rate of motor vehicle accidents on state freeways continues to rise. Greater economic prosperity – including booming business at local ports and warehouses – increases the demand for commercial trucks to transport goods across the state. Each day, tens of thousands of commercial trucks log a combined 8 million miles on California freeways.
As more trucks flood the roadways the potential for accidents increases. Unfortunately, this potential is not merely a statistical likelihood. Fatal California truck accidents have risen nearly 1% since reaching an all-time low in 2009.
What Causes Truck Accidents in California?
Truck accidents occur for many reasons. Some of these are unique to large, commercial trucks and others are cause for other traffic accidents. Los Angeles truck accidents may be caused by:
- Reckless driving;
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- Improper lane changes;
- Failure to yield to other vehicles;
- Failure to signal;
- Overloading cargo;
- Driver fatigue; and
- Distracted driving.
Sometimes trucks can cause accidents in which they are not involved. For example, trucks pose serious visibility issues for smaller vehicles on the road. If the driver of a passenger vehicle cannot safely see above or around a commercial truck – especially when changing lanes or entering/exiting a freeway – the chances of colliding with other vehicles is heightened.
Injuries in Los Angeles Truck Accidents
Los Angeles truck accidents can be incredibly dangerous for those involved. In fact, truck accidents are twice as likely to be fatal than accidents involving other vehicles. Who is most likely to sustain an injury or die in a truck accident? Turns out – not the truck driver. 97% of victims of truck accidents are those who are driving in passenger vehicles involved in the accident. The sheer difference in size and weight of a commercial truck gives drivers added safety. However, truck drivers do not always escape accidents unharmed. In the accident discussed above the driver of the truck that caused the accident was killed in the crash.
Truck accidents may be fatal, or they can cause serious injuries including:
- Loss of limbs;
- Traumatic brain injury;
- Broken bones and fractures;
- Internal organ damage;
- Internal bleeding;
- Disfigurement; and
Victims who have sustained life-threatening or life-changing injuries in a Los Angeles truck accident should contact an experienced California personal injury attorney to learn about options for recovering compensation from an at-fault truck driver.
How Can a Personal Injury Attorney Help After a Los Angeles Truck Accident?
Recovering from a truck accident injury can be incredibly time-consuming, stressful, and financially burdensome. Hiring a personal injury attorney to help you recover much-needed compensation to pay and account for medical expenses, rehabilitation, prescriptions, nursing care, and lost wages can help make this trying time more bearable.
The processes involved in filing a successful lawsuit for damages can be complex and is best handled by an experienced and qualified attorney. Here are a few things the personal injury attorneys at Citywide Law Group will do when filing a claim to maximize the compensation for our injured truck accident victim clients:
Investigate the Truck Accident. This may involve reviewing police reports, interviewing witnesses, reconstructing the accident with the assistance of experts, reviewing medical records, and analyzing photographs of the scene. As experienced truck accident attorneys, we understand which details can make or break a case.
Determine Liability. You may not know that you may be able to recover compensation from other parties – not just the truck driver who caused your accident. Truck drivers are specially trained, educated, and licensed professionals who represent their employers. If a truck driver is negligently trained or hired their employer may be held liable for those shortcomings. Our attorneys will scour the records and determine which parties may be suitable defendants in a claim for damages.
Negotiate with Insurance Companies. As personal injury attorneys, we have had our fair share of encounters with insurance companies who represent at-fault parties. These experiences allow us to understand the tactics these companies will use to minimize any offers they make or payouts they authorize. Using this knowledge, we can stay one step ahead and make sure we get the maximum amount of compensation our clients are entitled to recover.
Researching Legal Precedent and Law. Is your case unique? Have there been similar circumstances in the past that have resulted in victims recovering more than is typically awarded in truck accident lawsuits? There are just some of the questions we ask ourselves when researching a case. We leave no stone unturned when we fight for our clients.
Communicating with Other Parties. When you’re recovering from an accident the last thing you want to do is field calls from insurance companies, other drivers, or lawyers. We handle the communications so that you can focus on getting better.
Filing Forms On Time. California imposes some strict procedural rules for personal injury claims. Our attorneys ensure that all claims are filed in a timely manner so that our clients are not denied compensation on a court-related technicality.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a Los Angeles truck accident contact our office today for a free consultation. We understand that this is a stressful time and want to work with you to ensure that your recovery is as straightforward as possible. To ease the financial burdens you are likely already facing, our attorneys offer their excellent legal services on a contingency fee basis. This means that our fee is only paid if and when we recover compensation on your behalf. Call us today to learn more.